Queue at Palma's Son Sant Joan Airport

The photo of the queue that has gone viral.


In the in-depth interview he granted the Bulletin a few days ago, a point stressed by Jet2's CEO Steve Heapy concerned queues at airports. He was critical of the UK Border Force and queues at UK airports and hoped that there would not be a similar situation with controls at Spanish airports. He observed that if there are queues in the UK for flying out and then also big queues getting into Spain, it won't feel like people are on holiday.

The need to check Covid documentation is a principal cause of queues. Steve Heapy said that "Border Force are woefully underprepared". But it isn't the sole reason. The photo here, which has gone viral on social media, was taken at Palma's Son Sant Joan Airport last weekend. It shows a queue with zero social distancing, and the airports authority Aena maintains that this queue was the consequence of a specific moment when various international flights arrived at the same time. The queue was dealt with, Aena adds, within fifteen minutes.

However, it is reported that employees at the airport have themselves been warning that such situations are likely to arise, while the IATA International Air Transport Association is demanding that digital processes are rapidly adopted and that governments agree standards for digital certificates. Long queues and waits cannot be tolerated.

Last weekend, there were just over 1,000 flights at the airport - arrivals and departures - well below the capacity that Son Sant Joan has been used to in normal times. As tourist numbers increase, the processes need to be in place. In addition, as has been argued locally here in Mallorca, there also have to be adequate numbers of personnel for the controls. Despite Aena's explanation of several flights arriving at the same time, the scene last weekend suggested that there was a shortage of personnel.


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Johnp / Hace 8 months

Wait a minute here, so all these flights arrived and no one was expecting them????? It's an after effect of desperation for tourist money.


AndyJ / Hace 8 months

Armengol will be rubbing her hands and bleating her strategy for tourism has worked. A legend in her own mind


Stephen / Hace 8 months

Another reason for not coming this year plus PCR tests and the same hold ups when returning in our case to Heathrow.


Rich / Hace 8 months

Surely you ask how many planes are landing, their maximum capacity and then cater for that number. That covers the worst case scenario. Is that not common sense? In Mallorca I guess not.


Milo / Hace 8 months

Absolute disgrace this just proves how incompetent you are scenes like this will stop tourists from returning to the island as you are dangerous you can kiss goodbye too any recovery you had hoped for .


Majorca fan / Hace 8 months

Various international flights arrived at same time! It’s an airport that’s what they do.. What additional checks are taking place at the moment very few and very low footfall compared with normal peak season. Suspected that would happen in Palma as it is always slow at I bound compared with say faro which really slick at moving people through.